1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am an Apprentice within Group Operations, Service Delivery, Desktop Services. My team is responsible for Lloyds Banks internal and public facing Web sites hosted on Microsoft IIS/Windows server technology. Daily tasks include building development servers for a range of different teams across the bank, as well as helping to maintain these servers. I am also required to attend daily meetings with my team to go through daily change records. My responsibilities include builiding, supporting, and maintaining the banks IIS servers. This involves me communicating with serveral teams in order to get the correct information. There are various projects that go on through the year, some big, some small and I am involved in both regularly.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I will gain all my qualifications after 12 months of being in the bank. I have attended a two week foundation training course in Peterborough which developed my team skills, confidence, as well as my knowledge on the Bank and IT. Throuhgout the two weeks, we were required to work on a Digitalisation Powerpoint in which at the end of the two weeks we had to deliver it to many senior managers within the Bank. I have developed many personal skills such as communication and confidence as I have been required to speak with many people over the bank ranging from Apprentices, all the way to Head of Functions. I have learnt many new professional skills that is required for my daily role. These include using several systems in order to build and maintain servers to keep the bank up and running. These servers can be to do with a lot of things including, ATM's going down, a website such as www.halifax.co.uk going down. It is my teams reponsibility to help keep these up and running and I play a key part within this.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I enjoy coming into work every morning. The work isn't too stressful, however it is a challenge which i enjoy. The team that i work in is very supportive and networking within the team is seen as very valuable. It has met my expectations very well and i am involved in much more than i ever expected. I enjoy been part of LBG as i very like a valued colleague and everyone made me feel part of the team, and part of the bank.
4. How valued do you feel by Lloyds Banking Group?
I feel very valued by LBG as i feel that every bit of work that i do supports the bank. They fund for my training, as well as external training courses which makes me feel as if they want to get my full potential out of me, which is exactly what they are doing. There is a massive recognition for apprentices over the bank, and we are not looked down on. We are seen as the next generation for the bank. I have massive involvement within tasks and projects, just like a normal colleague would.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
It is very well orgainised and structured. I complete online eLearning every week, as well as attend online virtual classrooms. Different modules and exams have been set out in order to work towards and complete. I have regular 1 to 1s with my manager and my buddy, and i have an external assessor come to visit me to see how i am doing, and to observe me, every 12 weeks. There is a great task delegation system that my teams uses which starts from my line manager. This is great as it makes the team much more efficient and everybody gets the right work, as well as the right amount of work.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
A lot of support, we are able to speak to them at any time. We get a visiting from an asessor every 12 weeks at the end of every module to see how I am doing. They host online training for us to complete. We are able to ask them anything we want about the course, at any time. I feel like my peers are really helpful with my work as well and i know that my training provider does the best they can with our work and overall general wellbeing. i dont think i could ask for more if i could. We have had a few minor problems but nothing that couldn't be resolved in terms of my training.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I receive a great deal of support from my employer, especially my manager. I know that i can go to him any time i have a problem whether it be about work, or outside work. My mentor has regular meetings with me and he makes sure that i am completing the right work and he has helped me progress in my team and develop the skills that i have today. There is a great attitude around the team for supporting me. It is everybody in the team objective to develop my skills and knowledge therefore i have a massive around of support. I am able to contact HR anytime i want with any problem that i have.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
Very well, I am paid a very good salary for an Apprentice and I am easily able to pay for living, travel, daily and social costs. I currently live at home still so this is ideal for me at the moment. I do pay monthly board to my parents but i think that overall i manage my pay well and although it is not what i would be getting with a full time job; i think it's pretty decent for an apprenticeship wage and for the training i am given too (which is also paid for)!
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
There is many opportunities outside of my work, especially for volunteering. Lloyds aspire to making a difference and a lot of the time they do this by raising money for several charities. For example: in 2015, they have become partners with Children in Need to raise money for them. There is a gym within my workplace therefore i have the opportunity to keep fit whilst working for lloyds. Therefore, when i am not working I went to the gym to keep fit and healthy as well as playing football once a week in a 5-a-side league which lloyds set up down at The Shay (Halifax FC Stadium).
9. Would you recommend Lloyds Banking Group to a friend?
Because you are seen as a valued colleague and you are supported to a high level which helps build and develop your strengths, capabilities and skill-set, which maximises your potential to suceed. You meet a lot of young people in the same position as you and make good friends for life with Lloyd's bank too. The overall experience is really worth it and i think that overall it's a great apprenticeship with a good wage and training given.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Lloyds Banking Group?
Within the assessment day, stay calm, be confident and express yourself. There are many opportunities over a wide range of locations so make sure that you are applying for a Apprenticeship which you want to go into, as well as a good location for where you are. Learn as much as you can about the business too. Try to mention a few things you've learnt to any interviewer or person you speak to within the business during the application process. Try to be confident within yourself but without being arrogrant and the interviewers will like you.
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